Alright. First off. I want to apologize for not posting at all regularly since returning from Taiwan. I have been sewing and crocheting, but all the things I'm working on are all still being worked on, or they were so small that I didn't take pictures of them to share. Sorry about that. But here's good news, I have a fun post today. And I'm finishing up a project in the next few days. Bear with me. I promise to try and pick the pace up a bit!
Guess what I did?! I made a fondant cake all by myself!! (chest puffed with *humble* pride!) Pretty turned one last week, so it was the perfect excuse to finally try what I have wanted to for years. To really work with fondant and make a pretty cake.
What finally pushed me into action was discovering Make It Love It's Make-a-Cake Series. The tutorials made it seem so easy. Time consuming, yes, but doable. So I went to the store and bought myself some new toys.
1. Wilton rolling mat. 2. Rolling pin with thickness rings. 3. normal metal ruler. 4. special frosting spatula. 5. flower cut outs. 6. pre-mixed gum paste. 7. fondant smoother.
Made a huge mess.
|not pictured is the large amount of cornstarch on my pants and shirt...|
Which eventually resulted in this display.
I made a "dive cake" for Pretty to enjoy (and cupcakes with the extra batter). Turns out she's a bit prissy and wouldn't even touch it! Jake put a bit of the frosting on her tongue to entice her; instead, she made a face and tried to grab the frosting out of her mouth and fling it away. She would rather eat a bell pepper than anything sweet. So, sadly, after the party, this cake looked the same. No awesome messy baby pictures for her.
The loops of the bow were made from gum paste the flowers and the one from fondant.
But the main part of my work was on the big cake. I love the way it turned out, but I also know that there is a lot of room for improvement. I learned a whole lot during this process.
First: When she said that it's a good idea to make stuff ahead of time, she wasn't kidding. I did make the cakes before hand (using her tips and they turned out AWESOME. So moist!). But I waited until right before I needed it to mix up the fondant. And while I'm talking about it, making fondant was a very satisfying experience! When else do you get to smear your counter with Crisco on purpose and play with melted marshmallows and powdered sugar?! But let me tell you, my abs are sore from the kneading!! A bit beside the point of, I should have made this the day before.
Second: The recipe makes a lot of fondant! And you don't need very much because it should be rolled thin. I rolled mine way too thick for both the main cake covering and the cut outs. I might try to half the recipe next time. I had so much left over, with no purpose, that ended up in the trash.
Third: The gum paste was awesome to work with! I loved it. It is important to have the Crisco sitting right there to help you keep it pliable. It does dry out pretty quickly. It also doesn't taste very good, even though my niece gobbled up the curls one by one!
Fourth: I know I need to work on getting the cornstarch off the gum paste and fondant for a cleaner prettier look. But I ran out of time and wasn't sure how to go about it when it didn't just brush off. (any suggestions?)
Fifth: I probably should have read the instructions a bit more carefully before going to the store. I didn't realize I would need white chocolate chips to secure the flowers to the sticks. I ended up using green candy melts I had on hand. They worked great, but it was a bit messy looking.
In the end, I loved it! I will definitely try it again, with all my new knowledge. And I will also use the tutorials I found at Make It and Love It, because they were awesome! The family party was a hit, and how could you not love to be celebrating such an adorable little girl?!